Private Lesson with Master Chen

Tonight, we did yilu corrections and push hands.

Yilu corrections:
  1. Form 42. Embrace Head to Push Mountain (Bao Tou Tui Shan) - I need to imagine a line when the right hand goes out from the chest and under the left armpit, once the arm is extended, open the right shoulder to bring it inline with the line formed between the right hand and the chest.
  2. Structure is there, next step is to maintain the structure when I move the legs. Keep the upper half steady and stable, while the lower half moves.
  3. Concept of a fork. Imaging a triangle is formed with the holding end and the 2 outermost points at the pointy end. When I twist the holding end, the pointy end will rotate. The power source (the active point) is at the holding end. The opponent will think that the power is at the pointy end, therefore, will not be able to stop the rotation. Between the 2 points at the pointy end, they are both passive, but one is more passive than the other. The most passive one gives the illusion to the opponent that it is the source of power. Master Chen showed me another example: a triangle formed by the dantien and two knees. He rotates the dantian, and the front knee is the less passive, and the rear knee is more passive, and the rear passive knee is free to move up to the front. Form a reverse 'V' with your fingers, rotate the converging point (the active point).
  4. Don't move up and down. Keep the same height through the entire routine.
Push hands:
  1. Don't ever retreat, do what you need to do to move a little bit forward. If you are climbing a wall with 2 hands, you have to anchor the left hand, and move the right hand, then anchor the right hand, and move the left hand. Repeat this process as you go up. If you do this in many, many small increments, you will appear to others as if you are moving up very smoothly.
  2. Move, adjust, move, adjust, move adjust, repeat many of these.
  3. Aim your dantien to the opponent's dantien, and keep the aim fixed and forever.
  4. Someone pushes my right elbow to the chest, I step forward (bring my waist closer to the opponent). I keep the front kua (in this case, the right kua) fixed, and extend my hand while at the same time, I need to make sure the energy comes back to my centre. The size of the circle depends on the amount of force from the opponent on me. At a certain point after I extend my hand, I rotate my shoulder (outside downward) while my waist keeps turning right (yin yang split here).
  5. When someone pushes straight onto me, I need to make sure that my back doesn't move, so I can just brush the person off to the side (of course, timing is important here to catch the moment). Also, my rear kua needs to rotate downward to my point at my ankle.
  6. After the hands touch the opponent, keep the arms fixed (no movement whatsoever). Use the rest of the body to adjust. Imagine a line between the hand and the rear foot, bring the shoulder into that line.
  7. Concept of a boat floating on the wave. It is always on top of the wave for the same amount. The wave goes high, it goes high; the wave goes low, it goes low.
  8. When pushing someone forward, look for the point, go over it. Since the opponent is not static, that point you are looking for will keep changing, so you have to adjust to look for it, go over it a bit, adjust to look for it, go over it a bit, and repeat forever. Going over it is like rotating over it.
  9. Look for the fixed point in the opponent's body, do whatever to move that point.
  10. Rear-wheel drive is strong, front-wheel drive is convenient to use.
  11. The movement needs to be just right, not too much, not too little.
  12. In push hands, I need to make sure that I maintain a fixed point for a given movement, while looking to move the opponent's fixed point. Once the move is done (stopped), you change the location of the fixed point, and execute another move.
  13. A complete rotation in reality is composed of many different arcs with different fixed points in the three-dimensional space.
  14. What Master Chen said tonight all seemed to be variations of the same thing.
Positive Circle:
  1. Keep the rear waist fixed when the elbow comes in, and keep the front waist fixed when the hand goes out.